Friday, August 12, 2011
Texas A&M-to-SEC talk heats up further
By David Ubben
The Higher Education Committee in Texas' House of Representatives is set to meet on Tuesday to discuss Texas A&M's possible move to the SEC, Rep. Dan Branch told ESPN on Friday.
However, Texas A&M's Board of Regents moved up a meeting scheduled for Aug. 22 to Monday, Aug. 15.
On the agenda, listed as the final topic before the meeting adjourns: "Authorization for the President to Take All Actions Relating to Texas A&M University's Athletic Conference Alignment, The Texas A&M University System."
Branch told ESPN that the SEC could vote as early as Saturday, but the higher education committee hopes to know what is at stake for the rest of the state.
"There are millions of dollars at stake," Branch said. "And this could affect students at other schools like Texas, Texas Tech and Baylor."
Branch said among those invited to Tuesday's open session are Big 12 commissioner Dan Beebe, SEC commissioner Mike Slive and Texas A&M president Dr. R. Bowen Loftin.
From our newser:
Asked about multiple reports that he told Texas A&M officials that Texas was the key to the future of the Big 12 and that the Big 12 would survive without the Aggies, Beebe said in a text message to ESPN Dallas 103.3 FM's Ian Fitzsimmons those reports are "totally inaccurate."
While Texas A&M might be ready to bolt for the SEC, Florida State says rumors the Seminoles are considering the same are just that at the moment -- rumors.
The Big 12 believes it could withstand the loss of A&M with Texas and Oklahoma remaining as anchor schools. If A&M were to leave, the Big 12 could consider Houston as a replacement to the TV market.
The Big 12 is stressing it has six members with AAU Academic Accreditation compared to two in the SEC, a note Branch said could be part of a "wholistic view."
The Big 12 also says A&M's issues with the Longhorn Network are being addressed. And it is focused on the significance of maintaining regional rivalries and geographic relevance.
This story is moving fast, only slightly faster than the Aggies, who look like their wandering eyes may be followed by their legs very soon.